Our Sunday in New York had been a day I had really been looking forward to. It was the day I got to meet Anisa, one of the bloggers behind Two Traveling Texans. We had interviewed Anisa and Katherine, the other Traveling Texan, back in October 2015 and since then Anisa and I had become friends and been in contact via the blogs, social media and email. As we were in New York, where she has lived for the past 12 years, it seemed stupid not to hang out together whilst we were there. Again, after a great night’s sleep we showered and dressed and headed out. We had arranged to meet at 9.30am for breakfast and luckily for us the restaurant was only a 5 minute walk away, directly in front of Central Park.
Breakfast at Sarabeth’s (Central Park South)
Sarabeth’s do not take reservations for Sunday Brunch but they had assured Anisa when she had tried to book a table that as we were eating so early, we shouldn’t have a problem getting one. As we arrived the queue was out of the door, luckily for us Anisa had arrived a few minutes earlier and secured us a table. We were led through the very busy restaurant to our table in the back room. Anisa explained that Sarabeth’s is known for its breakfasts/brunches and is very much a place for ladies who lunch. The breakfast menu was extensive and in between chatting we finally decided what we wanted. Anisa went for the Short Rib Hash – baked eggs, poblanos and tomatillo salsa, Mr ESLT went for Salmon Eggs Benedict – smoked salmon, hollandaise, peppers and chives and I opted for the Spinach and Goat Cheese Omelette. All of which looked, smelt and tasted amazing. In fact, my omelette was one of, if not, the nicest I have ever had in my life. Full to the brim, Anisa and I headed in one direction as we had other plans and left Mr ESLT to go in the other with the intention of hunting down a sports bar to watch football (actual football, not American football).
Sex And The City Tour
Anisa and I headed to the Pulitzer Fountain in front of the Plaza Hotel to pick up the On Location Tours bus for the Sex And The City Hotspots Tour. We whizzed through the city looking out for places that the girls in the show had been. We also made a few stops, enjoyed cupcakes and cosmopolitan cocktails. It also gave Anisa and I the opportunity to get to know each other better in a fun setting. It was a great way to spend 3 hours and I would definitely recommend the tour if you were/are a fan of the series or films. Once the tour was over I called Mr ESLT to let him know that we were at Bryant Park, enjoying a drink at the Winter Wonderland. It turns out he had found a sports bar, not only had his team won but he had also bumped into a guy he went to college with 25 years ago in the North East of England and who he hadn’t seen since. What a small world and very much a ‘in all the gin joints….’ kind of moment.
Drinks at Refinery Rooftop Bar
Following our drinks at the Bryant Park Winter Wonderland Anisa took us to the Refinery Rooftop Bar which as the name suggests in on the rooftop of the Refinery hotel. Anisa explained that it is not her favourite rooftop bar in the city but as it was January and only lunch time, many weren’t actually open. I personally loved it, it had a really cool vibe about it, we grabbed a table outside, although technically not outside as it had a cover over it, and ordered drinks. We were very lucky the day we visited as the sun was shining and the sky was blue, it was hard to believe it wasn’t actually a spring day. That was until we went outside to get a closer view of the Empire State Building and the biting chill reminded us it was very much winter. It made me want to come back to New York in the summer months so we could take advantage of more of the rooftop bars dotted across the city. After a couple of glasses of the fizzy stuff, we said our goodbyes as Mr ESLT had to get across to Times Square as we had evening plans there. It was lovely to meet Anisa and hopefully we can catch up again soon on one side of the pond or the other.
Cheesecake at Juniors
No visit to New York is complete without indulging in a big fat piece of cheesecake; Anisa recommended we swing by Junior’s in Times Square. Junior’s cheesecake is famous in New York and there are now a number of branches around the city with the original being in Downtown Brooklyn. I do not know if Junior’s take reservations but if they do I would highly recommend that you make one as we waited around 30 minutes to get a table. I must admit though, the giant slab of cheesecake we were each presented with made up for the wait. In reality we could have shared one piece as neither of us could finish our own. There were so many different flavours to choose from and being a chocolate fiend I obviously chose chocolate cheesecake, I do however think the accompanying hot chocolate was a step too far! Fit to burst and feeling a little bit sick because of our over indulgence we headed to our last stop of the day and one I had been looking forward to for months.
Aladdin on Broadway
Riding the crest of our sugar high we headed to The New Amsterdam Theatre just round the corner from Junior’s and took our seats ready for the evening performance of Aladdin. I love musicals and I love Disney so how could I not love Aladdin. I didn’t need three wishes, just the one and that was to see this musical. It was phenomenal, seriously. I made Mr ESLT watch the Disney film before we headed to New York as he honestly had no clue of the plot or what to expect. Even though a Disney Musical would not be at the top of his ‘must see’ list, even he admitted that he enjoyed it, I even caught him singing along at certain points. The theatre itself is not that big and with seats in the middle of the stalls we were perfectly positioned to watch all the action. I enjoyed it that much I would happily see it again in the West End, especially if the guy playing the genie was even half as good. Tickets are not cheap, unless you are lucky enough to get reduced price tickets on the day but it was totally worth it.
With the drinks and the sugar wearing off, we headed back to our hotel via Times Square and Ray’s Pizza for a slice. With our time in New York drawing to a close far too quickly, we were conscious that we only had one more full day in the city and were adamant that we were going to make the most of it. Therefore, we pulled out our itinerary, guidebook and CityPASS booklet to see what we had left to tick off our list and devised our plan for the next day. We went to bed that night praying that the weather would be on our side again as a lot of the activities we had planned were outside and relied on it staying dry.